Hours after Hurricane Laura roared directly through the area, a massive fire at a chemical manufacturing facility in Westlake, Louisiana sent thick black smoke billowing over Lake Charles and forced nearby residents to shelter in place to avoid the toxic fumes, according to reports. The plant’s owner confirmed in a statement the fire was related to the storm. The plant is a major emitter of air pollutants including sulfur dioxide and volatile organic compounds, Forbes reported. The BioLab plant manufactures trichloroisocyanuric acid, chlorinating granules and other chemicals used in such household cleaners as Comet bleach scrub and chlorine powder for swimming pools. Both trichloroisocyanuric acid and chlorine can be toxic if ingested or inhaled. Thursday morning, Gov. John Bel Edwards warned residents to “shelter in place, close your windows and doors and TURN OFF YOUR AIR CONDITIONING UNITS.” Anne Rolfes, founder of an environmental group called The Bucket Brigade, told the AP, “In general, these facilities have a long history of not preparing. They cry ‘act of God’ but it’s failure to prepare time and again.” (Weather Channel, AP, Forbes, CBS, NPR, E&E $, Washington Post $, WOAI/KABB, ABC13, Daily Advertiser, WDSU, KLFY, Times-Picayune, FT $, Washington Examiner, Houston Chronicle)